is a political form of government in which governing power is derived from the people, either by direct referendum (direct democracy) or by means of elected representatives of the people (representative democracy
). The term comes from the Greek: δημοκρατία – (dēmokratía
) "rule of the people", which was coined from δῆμος (dêmos) "people" and κράτος (Kratos) "power", in the middle of the 5th-4th century BC to denote the political systems then existing in some Greek city-states, notably Athens following an uprising in 508 BC.
[The Union] is based on the principles of democracy and the rule of law.
It places the individual at the heart of its activities
Preamble of the Charter of Fundamental rights
The economic crisis in Europe has rapidly become a sovereign debt crisis due to the failure to coordinate a coherent political response at European level. The austerity mantra that has been imposed on the European people has led to a further fragmentation of the European space, with citizens of “core” and “peripheral” countries having increasingly divergent abilities to influence European decision-making through traditional mechanisms of national representative democracy. The institutions charged with ensuring the common goods of European citizens (the European Commission and Parliament) are undermined by the strongest countries in the European Council or by the European Central Bank. The approval of the Fiscal Pact, following the European Semester, the Sixpack and the Euro Plus Pact, is the latest European agreement focusing exclusively on the imposition of fiscal discipline which limits the power of citizens and parliaments (including the European Parliament) to decide over key economic and political choices, further decreasing democratic decision-making. Europe cannot raise itself out of the crisis unless reforms are made to put citizens at the centre of the EU politics. Institutional reforms are needed to strengthen the role of elected supranational institutions, to give more forms of direct citizen democracy, to make the institutions accountable to their citizens, as in every democracy.
How big data can help us better understand the ...
We'd like to announce that NESTA has funded us to develop a year-long project to use big data to map the civic economy. Along with the other successful organisations - Demos, the ...
Welcome to the Transeuropa Village
European Alternatives is working together to celebrate our "Transeuropa Village Weekend"
There is no such thing as society…
If politicians want to try and understand how people live, they need to really step out on the streets and not try and reach out to to Mr & Mrs Average.
What do new Europeans really want?
Power doesn't exist within individuals or even institutions, they exist in the relations between people. That's why at European Alternatives we provide the spaces for people across ...
European essay competition among high school ...
The Dutch group of European Alternatives (EA) and SEC would like to invite national centres to organize a national essay competition Europe, my future among high school ...
Time to equalise wages across Europe?
For some, an equal minimum wage won't change so much, but for others it will have a massive impact on their everyday lives.
Taking ownership of leadership
Discover how a young newspaper experiment with different techniques and how they built their confidence in taking ownership of producing a newspaper
Come to your senses
How do we experience a space like a market? The market is part of our everyday reality, but how often do we reflect on what we think, feel, do, say, see, hear, eat, drink or buy ...